Back-End Infrastructure Upgradation: Railways To Issue 2.5 Lakh Tickets Per Minute Online From September
Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw said the Railways will focus more sharply on increasing the convenience of passengers during 2023-24.
Booking rail tickets online and getting a response to your queries will be faster from September this year as the Railways will upgrade the entire back-end system.
Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw said on Friday (3 February) that next generation e-ticketing passenger reservation system’s back end infrastructure will be upgraded to issue 2.5 lakh tickets online per minute against the current capacity to issue 25,000.
“Our target is to increase the capacity by ten times, both for issuing tickets and attending to enquiries. By September this year, the entire back-end system will be upgraded. The capacity for attending enquiries will also be upgraded from four lakh per minute to 40 lakh per minute,” Vaishnaw said.
He added that safety features are also being improved to ensure that nobody can bypass the system to get tickets, to counter the touts problem.
Vaishnaw said the Railways will focus more sharply on increasing the convenience of passengers during 2023-24. One of the initiatives would be the introduction of “Jan Suvidha” or public convenience stores at 2,000 stations across the country.
He said these stores will sell all items that passengers need for their daily requirement and during their journey.
The minister said they would also see how these stores can also have “Jan Aushadhi” outlets for selling generic medicines.
The minister said the Railways is also developing Vande Metro for faster transport of people living around cities to their workplace. He added such trains will be launched on shorter routes, 25 km-60 km.
“Cities like Sitapur and Lucknow or Bhubaneswar and Cuttack will be connected by these trains. This system is well developed in Japan and Europe. These trains will be available every 20 to 30 minutes,” Vaishnaw said while the Regional Rail Transit System (RRTS) between Delhi and Meerut is an elevated corridor, the Vande Metro would run on existing rail corridors.
On improvement of railway coaches for comfort of passengers, the minister said all traditional coaches in passenger trains will be replaced with Rajdhani type coaches (LHB coaches) in the next three years.
Responding to a query he clarified that the mail and express trains will continue to have non-AC coaches and where there is demand, the railways will introduce more such coaches.
All states have got record allocation for railway projects as the government alloted the highest ever Rs 2.4 lakh crore for the national transporter in the Budget 2023-24.
While Vaishnaw read out the allocation for each state, he also spoke about the target to increase laying of new track, doubling and gauge conversion to 7,000 km during next financial year, an increase of 55 per cent compared to 2022-23.
Listing the priorities after the “Detailed Demands for Grants” in the Parliament on Friday, Vaishnaw said the highest ever budgetary allocation will accelerate railway projects across the country.
He said there is a huge focus on expediting the laying of railway lines, revamp of railway stations and introduction of modern trains on the railway network.
Before 2014, the average progress of new lines, doubling and gauge conversion was less than 4 km; this year it’s 12 km per day and the target is to take this to 19 km a day in 2023-24.
The minister said continuing its focus to build more flyovers and underpasses across the railway tracks, for the convenience of people living on both sides of railway networks passing through villages and towns, the railways will construct 1,000 such infrastructure projects during 2023-22.
“We have improved the designs of flyovers that will reduce the long detour that people earlier needed to cross the railway track. Similarly, the designs of underpasses have been improved to prevent waterlogging during the rainy season,” he said.
On the plan to redevelop 1,275 stations, Vaishnaw said most of the designs of these stations are based on the local heritage and culture. He said there has been good progress in 45 such projects and more will be taken up during the next financial year.
The minister also announced the introduction of newly designed washrooms to improve cleanliness and hygiene in 35,000 coaches in the next two-and-a-half years. Sources said that in the first phase these toilets will be introduced in all Rajhani and Shatabdi trains.
Later in the day, the minister gave details of allocations for states. These include Rs 10,012 crore for Odisha, Haryana (Rs 2,247 crore), Delhi (Rs 2,477 crore), Puynjab (Rs 4,762 crore) and Himachal Pradesh (Rs 1,838 crore).